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Department of Education at Messiah College






The academic year is highlighted with a number of Department events.


Scholarship Reception

In early fall, the Department of Education and the Boyer Center co-host a reception honoring the winners of the Ethel Brandt Bigham Endowed Education Award, the Ernest L. Boyer Sr. Teaching Scholarship, the Terry L. Stoudnour Endowed Education Award, and the Suzanne Joy Johnson Endowed Scholarship.  Details about these scholarships can be found on our Scholarship page.


Fall Educational Research Forum 

The Fall Educational Research Forum highlights the research interests of one of our faculty members or alumni.  The research forum is open to the public, and frequently, local school officials will be invited to join us for the discussion.


This past October, Dr. Jennifer Fisler presented on "Assessing Diversity in Christian Higher Education: Crowdsourcing a Research Project."


Rather than delivering a presentation on a finished project and its findings, Dr. Fisler presented a work in its infancy and invited the audience to contribute their ideas to advance the project. In this way, the research forum provided the opportunity for audience members to be active participants in the formulation of a research question and methods to study diversity-related understandings and outcome in Christian higher education contexts.


Past forums have included:

  • Mechanicsburg teacher Melissa Deibler ('09) presented on how to implement an expository writing unit in a second grade classroom
  • Senior Katelyn Miller ('11) presented her honors project research, “Podcasting: An Intersection of Traditional and Contemporary Literacies.”
  • Research and Development of the Wireless Enabled Remote Co-presence: Assistive Technology to Improve Employment Outcomes for Secondary Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (Patrick, 2009)
  • Contextual Nuances and Curriculum Development in the Developing World : A Case Study of a Complementary Education Program in Northern Ghana (Mfum-Mensah, 2008)

  • Using Ethnography to “Unquiet” Children (Voelker, 2007)

  • NSTA's SPIR Project: Snapshot of a Science Curriculum (Holmes, 2006)

  • Risky Business: Teaching, Learning, and Doing Theology by Analogy (Zook, 2004)

  • A Short Journey Through Pennsylvania’s Mathematics Assessment Land: Questions, Myths, Models, and Suggestions (Yoder, 2003)

  • The Home-schooling Revolution: Why Both Conservatives and Radicals Left the School for the Home (Gaither, 2002)


Spring Educational Research Forum

The Spring Educational Research Forum typically features a guest lecture on a topic relevant to education. Speakers have included:

  • Stephen Prothero “Religious Literacy: What every American needs to know . . . and doesn’t.”

  • Jonathan Kozol  “Still Separate, Still Unequal: The Ethical Challenge for the U.S. Public Schools”

  • David Smith “What is Excellent Teaching? Lessons for the Language Classroom”

  • Dion Betts “Was Special Education Worth It? Perceptions of Former Students”


Farewell and Commissioning Service

Every spring the Department of Education holds a Farewell and Commissioning Service for its graduating seniors. Come for an inspiring evening as we celebrate God’s goodness and challenge this year’s Department of Education graduates to lead lives of purpose as they depart Messiah.

This year's event will occur May 7, 2014, 7 p.m. in Hostetter Chapel.


Department of Education alumni, students, their friends and family and cooperating teachers are invited to attend. The service includes scripture reading, prayer, a brief meditation usually given by a Department graduate, musical performances by local school groups, a commissioning litany, and the presentation of lapel pins to the graduates. The lapel pin challenges and reminds graduates to continue to learn, serve, and care through their work as teachers. A reception and time of fellowship follows the service.



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